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Flames defeat Canucks to snap six-game win streak

Johnson made 28 saves, Tkachuk extended his point streak in Flames 3-1 win over Canucks

by Jason Johnson @Jay__Jo / CalgaryFlames.com

CALGARY, AB -- Matt Stajan scored with 4:31 left in the first period and Chad Johnson made 28 saves to help the Calgary Flames edge the Vancouver Canucks 3-1 at the Scotiabank Saddledome on Saturday.

The win vaulted the Flames back into the first Wild Card spot and four points back of the first-place San Jose Sharks in the Pacific Division. The loss snapped a six-game win streak for the Canucks, which sit one point outside the final Wild Card spot in the Western Conference.

"I'd say the biggest factor for us tonight was our goalie, Chad [Johnson]," said Glen Gulutzan. "I thought he was real polished, real calm, real steady and made some huge saves."

Alex Chiasson netted his seventh goal of the season and Stajan's game-winner was his fourth of the campaign while Frolik scored his third goal in the last two games.

It was Johnson's first victory in his last five starts.

"I felt pretty good," said Johnson. "I felt pretty good during the four-game [losing streak] I just had some unlucky bounces and played some good hockey teams. That happens.

"Tonight, I just tried to do the same thing and guys did a grat job in front of me battling. Our [penalty kill] was great in the whole game. It was a fun win."

Video: VAN@CGY: Johnson uses pads to deny Megna's shot

Bo Horvat scored the lone marker for the Canucks while Jakob Markstrom made 28 saves for the Canucks.

The Flames avenged Friday's 4-2 setback to the Canucks in which they outshot Vancouver 46-13.

"It's huge," declared Johnson, "We played a good game yesterday and probably deserved better. We just couldn't score on [Ryan] Miller and they got some really lucky bounces.

"Tonight, we just wanted to stick with it and be confident in our game. It was a fun atmosphere out there. It was back-and-fourth and tons of chances both ways and we won the game and that's what's important."

Johnson had to be sharp early, turning aside Loui Eriksson on a breakaway midway through the first period.

The Flames drew first blood at 14:26 of the opening period and then added another strike just 1:03 later.

First, it was Chiasson who redirected a blast from Sean Monahan off an offensive zone faceoff past Markstrom and then Garnet Hathaway centred the puck to Stajan, who tipped it by Markstrom's right pad to give the Flames a 2-0 first-period lead.

The Canucks got on the board and made it 2-1, 3:04 into the second period, when Horvat scooped up the puck behind the Flames goal, wheeled around and fired a shot low to the far side past Johnson.

Megna almost had the equalizer when he grabbed a rebound and attempted to sweep the puck wide on Johnson, but Dougie Hamilton dove across the crease just in time to block the puck and preserve the Flames 2-1 lead.

Johnson slid across the crease to deny Henrik Sedin while the Canucks had a power play late in the third period. Minutes later Johnson stopped Brandon Sutter when he split the Flames' defence and was in all alone but couldn't beat Johnson.

You can see just what a goalie can do," said Frolik. "You saw yesterday, Miller kind of stole their game and [Chad Johnson] was hot today and helped us a lot ... especially in the end.

There was a power play at the end and he made a few big saves there. Sometimes you need saves like that. I'm happy for him and that was a good performance by him."

Frolik put the final nail in the coffin when Matthew Tkachuk spotted him streaking through the neutral zone and feathered a perfect pass to send him in alone. Frolik made no mistake snapping a hard wrist shot past Markstrom

Video: VAN@CGY: Frolik nets breakaway goal late in the 3rd.

Tkachuk's helper extended his point streak to nine games.

"I think their defenceman got caught at little bit and I kind of beat him and tried to yell and he saw me there and fed me with a nice pass," recalled Frolik. "I'm happy that went in so we could relax a little at the end."

"If you were to ask me we played a lot better last night than we did tonight," said Stajan. "It's funny the way the game works sometimes. You've got to find ways to win sometimes when you're not your best.

"Our goalie came up big tonight and we'll take the two points and move on."

NOTES: Scratched for the Flames was defenceman Tyler Wotherspoon (healthy) and forwards Freddie Hamilton (healthy) and Troy Brouwer (broken finger). The Canucks were without blueliners Chris Tanev and Ben Hutton, who both were injured in Friday's contest in Vancouver against the Flames. Nikita Tryamkin left the game in the first period after receiving a big hit by Micheal Ferland but returned before the end of the period.

UP NEXT: The Flames travel to Winnipeg to battle the Jets on Monday (6:00 PM MT; SNW, Fan960).

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